Photography : Portraiture
The Pilgrimage of a Song
Elephant Kind Portraits by Fen
Nov 2020

What is a song? A blend of sounds travelling through the air in harmonious coordination? A strong storm of emotions? Or a form of pure spiritual elevation? However you choose to define it, only the most bitter of all people would disagree that songs are one of life’s most beautiful gifts.


The human race recognised the need for this kind of beauty long ago. Music has dwelt among humans ever since the ancient times. Where there was community, where there was a story to tell, a culture to be shared – music was there. With every societal movement, every turning point in history, every stage of humanity, music was there, accompanying us, witnessing everything.


Having seen and gone through most of our history, we should now understand that music is no small thing. After hundreds of thousands of years, just imagine the amount of melodies, vocabularies, and sounds that have already been used. Yet, still, we come up with new and fresh songs day by day. And technological innovations surely do not hinder this process. If anything, people say that, in such a time as this, it is a hundred times easier to birth a song into this world.


But then, again, remember how we established that music is no small thing? Creating music is, in fact, a beautifully complex, challenging, and sacred cultural activity. More than ever, we should now understand that the creation of a song is not an easy task. Before it reaches the ears of its audience, before it is 3 minutes long, a song must first travel through a long-winded journey – a journey of creation, of decision making, of collaboration. It must first embark on a sacred journey, a pilgrimage. It can be days, months, or even years, before it breathes to life. 


Sometimes, we may never know what kind of story, struggle, or hard work lies beyond the 3 minutes that we hear on our music streaming platform of choice. But we can choose to appreciate what we hear. We can choose to participate in what is being presented to us by the artists – in the emotions, in the narrative, in the logic behind the music. Just close your eyes, feel, and let the song do its work within you. 





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